5 second rule junior

This week we’ve been playing 5 Second Rule Junior kindly sent to us by University Games. 5 second rule junior

5 Second Rule Junior is aimed at children aged 6 and up and is a junior version of the already popular 5 Second Rule game. You do need a minimum of 3 players for this game so its worth remembering that if you’re going to be buying it as a gift.

5 Second Rule Junior has a simple concept to play but is harder than you first think. 5 seconds really isn’t that much time when you’re against a clock!

How to play 5 Second Rule Junior

The winner is the first player to get to the finish line of the relatively small game board. Which on first glance seems easy. But it’s not all that easy to think quickly and stay focussed in 5 seconds!

5 second rule junior

To advance forward on the game board you have to answer the question on the card and name 3 examples of the question asked. Younger players are allowed to just give 2 answers. An example fo this would be “Name 3 things you take on a car journey”.

5 second rule junior

If the player answering the question names the 3 things within the 5 seconds then play passes to the next player to answer the same question. You can’t name the same things though. As you can imagine this gets harder and harder as the question goes round. Someone at some point will lose! For those players that have successfully managed to name 3 things (or 2 if they are younger) then they all move forward a space on the board. Or two spaces if the question has gone round that many times!

In addition to the plain spaces on the board there’s some helping hand spaces too which allow you 10 seconds for your question if you land on them.

5 second rule junior

What did we think?

We really enjoyed playing 5 Second Rule Junior. So much so we’ve had it out each time we’ve had visitors over half term. It’s a fun way to keep the children entertained. The concept is easy to understand and game play has lasted just long enough to keep everyone’s attention. As most of the players get to have a go at each question you really do have to concentrate on game play. This avoids duplicating someone elses answers.

My 6-year-old was quick to get in a sulk if he couldn’t get his 2 answers. However he was easily pleased with being allowed to use the timer. The timer makes a silly sort of mooing noise each time it’s turned over! Be sure to use the timer though on a flat surface. If you don’t all the tiny ball bearings won’t move down and time 5 seconds properly…and nobody likes a cheat!

5 second rule junior

We were not paid to review this item, as always all opinions are our own.

Tatton Park Half Term Fun

This Halloween half term at Tatton Park there’s some spooky goings on. We went today to explore whats on offer. You have the rest of the half term week to enjoy the haunted happenings!

Tatton

There’s some secret haunting at the Old Hall which is open everyday from 11am-4pm (last entry 3pm). Dare you step into what is reported to be one of the most haunted buildings in the country? You can discover the paranormal activity and secret legends.

Spooky fun in the Tatton Mansion

If less haunted activities are your thing then do what we did and go play “I Spy” in the amazing mansion. I love that children are welcomed into the mansion to learn all about what life was like in the past. The trail was enjoyed by the boys and I’m pretty sure the eldest got all the questions right!

Tatton

Tatton

TattonLittle fingers are welcome to explore the interactive displays too.

You can snoop around the mysterious mansion, looking for clues to answer the questions. Follow the trail and discover the treasures of Lord Egerton. The mansion is open daily from 12pm-4pm (last entry 3pm)

Tatton

tatton

Mystery Maze at the Farm

If being outdoors is more your thing then trek on down to Tatton Park farm. Where you can follow your instincts through the mystery maze and discover surprises along the way! Or you can collect your conker from the secret tree and join in all the creepy conker fun!

tatton

Last but not least if you’re not exhausted by all the other activities then head to the Secret Garden behind the beautiful mansion. The garden is open everyday from 10am-6pm (last entry 5pm) where you can hunt out the spooks. Use your spooky skills on the secret garden trail everyday during half term Sat 21 Oct- Sun 29 Oct!

For more information check out Tatton Parks website for updates and more information.

 

christmas

Sorry if you don’t like Christmas, but I do! It’s my absolute favourite time of year. I adore the build up so much. Now my favourite local Garden Centre Bents has opened their Christmas displays I couldn’t help but go and take a look. To me it signals the start of the countdown to Christmas.

So the picture to me signals the stat of the countdown!

Except this years countdown for us includes a major happening, the arrival of our third baby due in November. This year I’m trying to be super organised so that once the baby arrives I will have nothing else to do except sit back and enjoy the time. I don’t really want to have presents to buy (although the internet has revolutionised that!). I don’t want to have to do any wrapping. I just want to enjoy the first few precious weeks with the new baby and watching the boys get excited about this special time of year.

Photalife

Christmas at Bents just got better!

If you’ve read my blog before you’ll know that I’ve posted about Christmas at Bents previously. Not because they asked me to. Not because they even got in touch. But I posted about it because I absolutely love the place. It’s like no other garden centre I know. Still family run after all these years. With family at the heart of everything they do. I love going there for its family friendliness. The playground is fabulous for little and big ones. The toilets cater for all ages and are always clean (this is very important to me!). The variety of food on offer is just great, something for everyone. And since the expansion in recent years the children just love the toy shop. While we get to view the craft and kitchen shops. I’m always recommending it as a go to family destination, which says a lot for what started as a garden centre.

Bents is on Warrington Road in Glazebury, WA3 5NT.

bents

Bents are celebrating their 80 year anniversary this year. As ever at Bents Christmas is a fabulously big affair. People come from miles around to see the displays, room setups and decorations. You are positively encouraged to show from the displays. See something you like on displays just pick it up and buy it!

Christmas at Bents

Christmas at BentsChristmas at Bents is a grand affair – Room displays are a visual delight

 

This year however just when you thought it couldn’t get any better, they just added a whole other level of fabulousness! Bents very own Winter food market! Think Manchester Christmas market food on a small-scale. Its been constructed especially for Bents and is set within the glass house building. So if it rains, it’s no problem the roof gets closed, and you stay dry.

Christmas at Bents

We went along to the opening night and got to sample the delicious food on sale.

Christmas at Bents

In the middle of the food market is the traditional German sausage stall. With its charcoal fuelled hanging grill. Theres a choice of 3 different authentic German sausages, a premium bratwurst, a chilli bratwurst and a vegan hot dog. The bratwurst are all served in pretzel buns and you can help yourself to condiments. Even the condiments are authentic from Germany.

Vegan hot dog in a Pretzel bun with sauerkraut

Christmas at Bents

Neil tried the premium bratwurst and the boys shared one. I had the vegan version with sauerkraut. I’m not vegetarian but I’m not keen on meat so I usually go with the vegetarian choice.

Neil reports the bratwurst was delicious. To eat the we sat in a little hut. Decorated with hops and Christmas lights, I loved it!

Winter Food Market Opening Times

The food markets are open every day as follows:

Mon & Tues: 12noon to 5pm

Wed – Fri: 12noon to 8pm (Fridays they plan to have live music 6pm-8pm)

Sat: 12 noon to 5pm and Sun: 12 noon to 4pm

The other food options at a different hut are pulled pork in a pretzel bun. Alongside pulled mushroom in the same pretzel bun and a snack choice of pork scratching. We couldn’t pass on trying food from here. It smelled delicious. So after listening to the live music for a while we shared one of each choice. Neil said the pulled pork was delicious but the boys said it was a little spicy for them. I tried the pulled mushroom, my goodness it was so nice. It came with a slice of cheese and some fresh rocket. I would highly recommend this choice if you prefer a vegetarian choice.

Pulled Pork in a Pretzel bun with cheese and rocket

Christmas at Bents

There are two more food huts. The one in the middle sells pancakes, honeycomb and waffles. The last hut sells drinks.

The pancakes were a popular choice!

Christmas at Bents

The drinks menu is extensive and sells hot, cold and alcoholic choices. I was told that all the alcoholic choices, bottled bears etc are from Bents very own food hall, so if you taste something you like there’s the option to take it away with you too.

Christmas at Bents

Being pregnant and driving I couldn’t really have a drink but I did ask to have a small sample of the hot mulled wine. After all Christmas food markets aren’t authentic unless there’s a smell of mulled wine and apple toddy in the air. To me mulled wine is Christmas, so I slowly and carefully enjoyed a few tiny sips of the wine. I can tell you it was lovely. Baby is due in 5 weeks now so thankfully I’ll be able to go back for a full glass before Christmas once he’s arrived!

I’m not sure there’s much more I can say about the Winter Food Market at Bents this year. Except if it’s not on your list of festive things to do add it now! Its family friendly atmosphere, all-weather ceiling and delicious offerings are upping Bents game once again!

bents at christmas

 

 

 

 

 

I’ve been wanting to write a post for a while about ‘Christmas Stash’ photographs. As an avid social media fan I’m often found browsing Facebook, Twitter or Instagram. They are my go to social media. I don’t really get snapchat, maybe I’m too old. A few people have tried to teach me but I just don’t get it!

I’m in lots of different facebook groups. I have lots of varied interests so it really is a wide range of groups. Around this time of year my feed starts to fill up with other parents ‘Christmas stash’ photos. If you’ve never seen one, let me explain. It’s usually a photograph or photographs of a pile unwrapped of toys/gifts for a child (sometimes children). The photos are always accompanied by an explanation and often a question. The question is usually “Is this enough?” or “What else can I get?”.

This is what I just don’t understand. Why are people posting pictures of piles of presents and then asking if it’s enough or what else they can get?

Surely if its ‘enough’ is an individual decision. What some families might consider enough may be way over the top for others or visa versa.

Surely the amount or quantity of presents is an individual decision. I’m often left wondering if the photographs are just to show off? Is it that the person posting the photograph wants people to say that its way to much to make them feel better?

Is the poster feeling better about themselves by proving how much they can give their own child?

Do they do it to make other people feel inadequate?

I just don’t get it, to me it seems like showing off.

I honestly doesn’t bother me how much other parents by their own children.

What does bother me though is that these kind of photographs maybe making the parents feel upset, sad or inadequate.

If it’s your families tradition to buy 100 presents at Christmas then so be it. If you just get one per child then thats cool too. It’s ok to be proud of working hard and being able to afford to buy gifts.

It’s sad that in todays society there are so many people struggling with money, and many can’t afford to buy gifts for children at Christmas. Many can’t even afford food year round not to mention at Christmas.

I don’t even know what the purpose of this post is. Maybe if it makes one person think before posting a picture with the words “What else can I get?” or “Is this enough?”.

Enough is what you personally think is enough.

Enough is what you can afford to give at Christmas.

No two families are the same.

Children remember the love they feel and have felt in years to come not the gifts they receive.

 

 

 

 

yeti in my spaghetti

This week we’ve been playing ‘Yeti in my Spaghetti’ board game so that we can write a little review.
Yeti in my spaghetti

Yeti in my Spaghetti is a board games aged at ages 4 and up however my 3 and half year old did enjoy joining in and understood how to play.

yeti in my spaghetti

You’ll need two or more players for the game and by gaming standards it’s pretty easy to understand how to play.

Theres only 3 main components to the game, the yeti (now he’s pretty cute!).

The bowl and the spaghetti. The aim of the game is simple. Don’t let the Yeti fall all the way into the bowl if you want to be the winner! The rules are simple to, just take it in turns to remove single pieces of spaghetti. Easy you might be thinking. Well yes easy to understand, difficult to be the one to not topple that cute yeti!

yeti in my spaghetti

Pros:

We loved how simple it was
We also loved how even little people can join in
Game play is relatively short so it keeps small peoples attention span
Easy to set up, even for small people
Theres only one thing to focus on and thats the Yeti
No potential choking hazards like similar games with smaller marble sizer pieces
Easy to put away
If you just want to fill a few short minutes its quick and easy to play!

Cons:

The spaghetti needs keeping together when you remove it or you’ll end up loosing it
Other players will endure the grumps if the loser doesn’t like the fact they’ve lost!

My 6 year old desperately wanted to make a video review of the game so here it is (it’s only short but it gives you a good idea of the game!)

Thanks to University Games for sending us the game to review. I was not paid for the review and as always we are free to write are own honest opinion.

This weeks photo was captured as I was filming them together. My youngest had got upset about something and was crying. I actually can’t remember now why he was crying. The eldest offered to read him his current favourite book at the kitchen table. Currently his favourite book (which changes weekly!) is Hamiltons Hats. So as he started reading I picked up my phone to film. I like to film them as much as I can to keep for future. Not for anyone else to see just us, so we can look back at them in a few years.

As I’m filming on the phone I’ll often just take a snapshot as I go, so it’s only from my iPhone and totally unposed (when in so many ways it does look like it might have been) I can give my honest word it was just a lovely moment they had together.

 

 

Photalife

This week we were offered the chance to review a bunch of flowers from Prestige flowers.

prestige flowers

Of course I couldn’t say no to a bunch of flowers being delivered. I love getting flowers. Flowers really brighten up the house. Part of the reason I also said I’d love to review a bunch is because I’ve been thinking about sending flowers as Christmas gifts this year to family and friends who live far away. When you order online prestige flowers will arrange to deliver the flowers via Royal Mail to the chosen recipient in a beautiful packaged box.

prestige flowers

I think a bunch of flowers would be lovely to receive just before Christmas because it would last through the festive season. We always have people popping in and out at Christmas and having fresh flowers would be lovely. When you do you’re mad last minute shop for fresh food a few days before Christmas I never think to get flowers for the house too. To receive a bunch as an early Christmas present would be fab. Which is why I’m going to be sending some myself this year.

The flowers that Prestige flowers sent for me were a stunning bouquet of autumnal colours.

Prestige flowers

As I opened the box I was blowed away by the beautiful combination of like pinks, autumnal yellows and pretty red touches.

Fresh from the Box Flowers

I lifted them out carefully and was amazed that they opened up into a gorgeous bunch. They had survived a journey in the postal service thanks to the robust packaging.
Prestige flowers

As with all flowers they will last longer with proper care and attention. It is recommended to cut their stems at a 45 degree angle every few days so that they can soak up lots of water. Be sure to top the water up daily too and use the flower food included. When someone has taken the time and money to send such a thoughtful gift its important to make the most of them.

I almost didn’t want to remove the beautiful wrapping from the outside of the flowers. It was clearly wrapped with care and hand tied before sending. All the stems were beautifully lined up and symmetrical. I know though to keep them at their best the care is vital.

Thankfully it was easy to trim them and make them look just as beautiful as they did when they arrived.

Prestige flowers really are stunning. You can tell that they are passionate about creating a great looking product. A product that arrives with the intended recipient in perfect condition. I hope my bunch last a long time. They look fab brightening up the kitchen table during the current rainy weather.

Thanks again to Prestige flowers for sending the bunch to review. I was gifted the product in exchange for an honest review. I was not paid to write about the flowers. As always I would only review items I really like or should by myself.

Prestige flowers

3 Children – My thoughts

If you haven’t read my blog before then the first thing you should know about our family is that we have two boys age 6 and 3. Our third little boy is due to join us at the end of November this year.

new baby

Growing up I always saw myself with 3 children if I was to be blessed with any. I like odd numbers. I know some people don’t but to me odd is good. The age gap will be pretty even between them all. They are all boys too which I think is nice. I won’t lie I have always loved the thought of a girl but it wasn’t meant to be and I’m ok with that. I’m head over heels in love with my boys now and I already feel a connection to the one I’m growing inside me.

I do worry though that three is two many for me to cope with! I know millions of mums have done it before me. Lots of families now have three or more children. They all seem to cope fine. With this one being a boy we do already have a lot of things suitable for him. Which is obviously a finiancial saving. We will of course have to pay for him to go to nursery and having already spent an eye watering amount on childcare throughout the boys short lives this is a part I’m not looking forward too. But after this one is born and I’m lucky enough to have had my maternity leave then I will want to go back to work.

I’m not the sort of person suited to staying at home all day, as much as I’d love a job I could work from home, I’m far to easily distracted by the other household jobs, cleaning, washing, tidying etc! Plus after this baby I want to focus on me and my career. I want to try as hard as I can to be the best I can be at work. I want to feel like I’m doing a good job and making a difference.

But how will we juggle three? Two will be in school so thats a single drop off and pick up at breakfast club and after school club. The youngest will be in nursery so thats another drop off. We’ve managed two drop offs before, we can do it again!

What about when we’re walking to school though, I only have two hand, to hold when crossing the road. Will my eldest be ok to hold a younger brothers hand? It’s the small things I’m worried about. What if he starts walking into the road and I can’t grab him back in time as I don’t have his hand?

Being emtophobic I can’t bypass the elephant in my head either, what if they are all ill at the same time? How will I cope? What if we all come down with d&v? The rational part of my head says of course I will cope but the anxious part says how?

I’ve had a baby and a toddler together at the same time but what if this time its different? What if I’m trying to feed baby and the middle one needs the toilet while we are out and about? That’s without adding the eldest into the mix! A sling will probably be my best friend again. I remember writing last time about how I cope with a baby and a toddler at the same time. You can read that post here.

baby sling

Learning to Cope

I’m sure I’ll manage some how but sometimes it just feels like I’m wobbling just a little bit. Of course I don’t regret the decision to have 3. In fact I’m pretty damn excited to be doing it all one last time. I’ve been given one last chance to have and hold my very own newborn. I know how quickly time will pass with a baby so need to make sure I enjoy every single second. Including enjoying the last few weeks of pregnancy. But sometimes, just sometimes the wobble happens and I need to give my own head a wobble to stop worrying. Things will work out, it will be ok.

At 30 weeks time is passing very quickly, it’s now roughly 10 weeks until he joins us and I become a new mum for the very last time.

new mum

 BlogOn Christmas 2017

I’ve been to quite a few BlogOn conferences (I think it’s 4 now?) but I still get nervous going. I don’t really feel like I fit in very well. I have no idea why, everyone has seemed very friendly! In my full time job I am confident in walking into a new room full of people I don’t know and just making networking. With blogging for me it’s very different, I still get very nervous. I love to join in with the link up though as I feel like I get to know something about other people going and that I’m not the only nervous one! So here goes…

BlogOnXmasJumper@2x.png

1. Please share your favourite photo of you.

Ekk do I have to? I’m like most people I don’t like photos of me but I suppose this one is ok. I’m the one in the middle taking the photo, it just makes me laugh when I see this photo. I love the make-up artists style, she was so cool!

BlogOn

2. If you could choose a band to play in your garden for your birthday, who would you pick?

Easy – Take That, I have always been a TT fan but imagine them in the garden, now that would be awesome!

3. What do you take with you for long visits to the toilet?

I’m shy, I don’t use the toilet……

4. What word can’t you spell?

I actually can’t think of that, not because I’m perfect (far from it!) but because by the time I’ve typed things and looked back up the Mac has autocorrected for me!

5. What’s the most unusual job you’ve ever had?

Not had that many different jobs but I suppose driving a tractor on a farm when I was a teenager was pretty unusual?

6. Knitting, sewing or crotchet?

Sewing – I would love to crochet but I have tried several times and I’m pretty rubbish so I’ve given up 🙁

7. Without looking it up, what is a jerkinhead?

I have no idea, at a guess some kind of pickle or maybe a beer?

8. If you could have as much of one food as you wanted forever, what would it be?

Mango – I love mango

9. What is the scariest thing you’ve ever done?

Lived through a sickness bug as I have emetophobia (phobia of vomit and vomiting) so to me its the scariest!

10. If you needed a getaway driver, who would you choose?

My brother, he drives like a maniac but so far touch wood hasn’t hurt himself so I think he could get me away!

11. Would you rather live in Narnia or at Hogwarts?

Hogwarts, the people of Narnia seem to cry a lot and its very very cold!

12. What snack food says ‘Christmas’ to you?

Mince pies – is that technically a snack?

13. Is there life on Mars?

Yes I think so

14. Which Christmas movie would you be a character in, and who would play you?

Jovie in Elf, it’s my all time favourite Christmas film and I’d love to be her singing in the shower with Elf!

15. What are you proudest of?

My children, I’m so proud that I made them and so far have kept them mostly safe growing up!

I’m really looking forward to BlogOn Christmas as it’s my absolutely favourite time of year. I can never have too much Christmas. This time at blog on I’ll be the heavily pregnant one, looking tired and worn out! Can’t wait to see everyone there, please say hi to me it would make my day! I’ll make an effort to say hi to everyone else too without feeling nervous or awkward!

Blog ON Conference